Music acts like a gentle drug on our mind

Music acts like a gentle drug on our mind

The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry estimates that people listen to music for 21 hours a week. German researchers wanted to find out why so much time is spent on this activity. They affirm that the fourth art hooks us and always makes us want to listen to more and more.

A research team affiliated with the Berlin School of Popular Arts arrived at this finding after conducting an experiment with 81 volunteers aged 21 to 60. The academics first asked them to answer several questionnaires about their musical preferences and personality traits. They then asked them to choose a song from a list of eight, including “Smell Like Teen Spirit” by Nirvana, “Let It Be” by the Beatles and “Despacito” by Luis Fonsi featuring Daddy Yankee.

Music calls music

After listening to the song of their choice, the study participants told the researchers about their musical desires. They also performed a cognitive task and completed a form on “earworms.” This name refers to fragments of melody that arise spontaneously in our mind, generally when we are busy carrying out activities requiring little concentration, and which we find difficult to get rid of.

This experimental protocol made it possible to highlight the fact that music calls for music, according to the PsyPost site which relays the conclusions of this study, published in the journal Psychology of Music. In other words, listening to a song makes you want to repeat the experience immediately.

Good in his body, good in his head!

A link between listening to music and character traits?

However, researchers have noticed that some individuals are more likely than others to get caught up in the fourth art. Extroverted, open-minded and “psychotic” people are more likely to be prey to earworms in their daily lives. But the music listening session organized as part of this study does not seem to have had an impact on this phenomenon.

However, it is important to note that this research work has methodological limitations, the first being the absence of a control group. It therefore does not allow us to assert with certainty the existence of a causal link between listening to music and character traits. Despite everything, this study shows that the fourth art is not just simple entertainment. It acts in a very profound way on our brain and our emotions.